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What if God doesn’t deliver?

In the liturgical church, the four Sundays before Christmas are called Advent. This Advent season, “waiting for God to show up” is our theme.

It occurs to me that sometimes our problem is that we don’t expect God to show up. Yet, far more often, when we expect God to show up, He doesn’t show up in the way we expected.

The Jews at Jesus’ time were expecting God to show up. They expected Him to come as a baby…sort of (everybody’s got to be born, right?). But, when they thought of God showing up, they expected fireworks, ticker-tape parades and weapons. Lots of weapons.

When you read the gospels, you can catch the disciples ‘looking for the swords’ from time to time. “When you enter your kingdom” they asked. You see, they followed Jesus not just because He was cool, but because they expected Him to make a difference. They expected Him to relieve their pain, loosen their tax burden, and give them freedom.

Instead, He “fixed things” by freeing the socially oppressed and teaching them to lighten up and stop worrying. Instead of facing off with Rome, He faced off with the religious leaders of the day. Jesus was focused on opening up the communication lines with heaven so the people would have the power to be God’s representatives on earth. Jesus showed up, He did make a difference, but it took on a form they really didn’t expect.

What are you waiting on God for? Is it possible that His answer will come in a form you didn’t expect? Will you be willing to accept it?


For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness
from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the LORD Almighty
will accomplish this.

Isaiah 9:6-7


  1. I also have been thinking about expectations. I spoke with one of my fellow parishioners at my church recently asking him how he and his family chose to go there. His response, “It was the first church I had ever been to where people came with an expectation of God showing up, and He usually did.” I thought to myself, “Do I live my life expecting God to show up?” When I focus on that my expectations change and fall more in line with His promises to us, instead of just my own ideas of what would be good in my life. “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” Combine this scripture with “whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Together, these scriptures will change our expectations. Expecting wonderful things is good, but expecting without thought of God leads to disappointment.

  2. Kim

    19/12 at

    Yeah – God’s been talking to be about expectations for about 5 years. First, identifying that I had expectations, then watching my own reaction when expectations weren’t met – from the little things to the big things. Oh to hold onto life so loosely that I can flow with life, yet tightly enough to have made an impact.

  3. As I mature in my walk with the Lord, I am finding the more that I trust him in all the details big & small .. I trust in His will for the outcome even though it is not what I was praying for, yet it always ends up being the best for me or the paticular situation, after all He did lay out our journey’s ..

    Many lessons are found in His journey, just like the simple birth of a simpe baby in a simple manger 🙂

  4. I like to think of Advent as that time when a person reaches inside of themselves to find God and to find God in all of those around him. Then Christmas becomes a celebration of God in all of us. Remember when God made Adam and Eve, He breathed life into them, so God is in all of us.

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